Fire Service offer free home safety checks

The West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) is urging people to look out for elderly relatives and neighbours this winter and keep them safe.

The Fire Service’s ‘Cherished’ campaign has been prompted by an unusually high number of fire-related deaths among pensioners in 2015.

Since the start of the year, 10 people over the age of 60 have lost their lives as a result of a house fire, in our region alone.

In eight of the cases, the fire was linked to smoking.

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Assistant chief fire officer Dave Walton said: “Sadly we know that older people are more vulnerable to injury or death as a result of having a fire in the home.

“Whilst many proudly live independently, we know that living alone can also put you at greater risk from fire.

Smoking is a clear factor in the recent tragedies, however, we believe other risk factors generally include the onset of dementia, immobility, sensory impairment, alcohol consumption, the side effects of medication and social isolation.

“Ultimately these factors can make it harder for older people to be aware of a fire, raise the alarm and make an unaided escape.”

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WYFRS is offering every household a free Home Fire Safety Check, which can be booked online, in a bid to prevent tragedies before they occur.

A video has also been released, reminding people to do their bit for the older generation.